Gone missing overnight, now just clipped
off stems, where flowers kissed our eyes
and buds whispered “soon.”
Rats on stilts, my neighbor Andy calls
them. Carousing our backyards like local
ten year-olds in pirate hats. Swashbucklers,
The Captain of our ’hood, an eight-point,
sacked our backyard reforestation—
stripping bark from magnolia and tulip
poplar saplings—a single nights’ work
Deer are the landscape’s bad habit, like
Mom’s failure to quit smoking. Deer spank
me by ensuring I never have
enough daylily flowers to thicken
my moo shu or hot and sour.
The buds, straining to mature like ninth
graders, are “golden needles” in Cantonese
cuisine. I like them sautéed, sizzling and
speckled with red chili flakes, and
Four fence posts in, my optimism
conjures buds, both flower and taste, and the
mingling of the two.
has been writing poetry for 30 years. His poems may be found, or are forthcoming, in 21 different reviews, most recently: Verse-Virtual, Poetry Life and Times, Black Poppy Review, Trouvaille Review, and Last Stanza Poetry Review. His writing credits include ten years as a columnist for American Angler Magazine. Hobbies include running, music, fishing, gardening, and cooking.
Bio and writing at, respectively: